An old friend

Today went extraordinarily well.

I played badminton with an old friend who is an occasional contributor to the comment sections of this blog, and enjoyed it immensely.

I also had a meeting with my advisor (the chair of my doctoral committee), which went much better than I could have hoped. I now transition from working on what I had been calling a pre-proposal to a proposal, which is one of the last stages in the Ph.D. program. So good for me!

I also have been impressed with John Scalzi‘s books, Old Man’s War and The Ghost Brigades. Amazon’s audiobooks seem to be handled through Audible, which I subscribed to years ago (before I came to UNL). I enjoyed the series, and I saw that even with Audible’s prices (which are cheaper than iTunes), I would save money subscribing a month at a time rather than buying audiobooks individually.

scalzi_books

Lo and behold, I enter a username and password… and there pops up my old account, which I had from 2001 to 2004! Very cool. I can even redownload any of the old books, if I want. I remember listening to audible on a Rio PMP 300. Audible, my old friend.

But for now: on to The Last Colony!

“… the people choose freedom.”

Catholicgauze, who has been working 16-18 hour days keeping serving our country in Iraq, blogging, and completing a thesis, has an impressive primer on the January 2009 Iraq elections.

Flag of Iraq 2008

From the piece:

The Sunni Arabs are divided between the urban, party-in-power Iraqi Islamic Party, the rural tribal-based MSI, and a whole lot of little parties that revolve around small but powerful cliques. There are rumors and allegations going back and forth of corruption, lies, and ties to the old regime. Rightly or wrongly everyone is accused of being too friendly too the Coalition, too friendly government in Baghdad, a former member of Al Qaeda or another insurgency group, or having the backing of Baath Party members in exile in Syria. Some probably are.

Read the whole thing.